4 essential oils to treat Hemorrhoids

Hemorrhoids (also referred to as piles) can be uncomfortable. They are essentially swollen veins on the anus or in the lower rectum, and they can cause symptoms like itching, discomfort, and rectal bleeding.

Hemorrhoids inside of your rectum are called internal. Hemorrhoids that can be seen and felt outside of your rectum are external.

This can cause pain, inflammation, and even rectal bleeding.  Hemorrhoids are usually caused by straining during bowel movements, obesity, or pregnancy.  It’s common to develop them throughout pregnancy because chronic constipation is often a common pregnancy symptom.  Constantly straining to empty your bowels creates pressure in this region. 

hemorrhoids

It’s also common to experience hemorrhoids postpartum, especially after vaginal birth.  The intense pushing and pressure on the perineum can strain the veins in the area causing them to expand with blood.

Nearly three out of four adults experience hemorrhoids at some point in time. There are risk factors that can make you more likely to have hemorrhoids, like pregnancy and obesity, but sometimes their cause is unknown. Hemorrhoids can cause:

  • bleeding during and after bowel movements
  • lumps and swelling around your anus
  • painful irritation

Since hemorrhoids are caused by the swelling of your blood vessels, essential oils with anti-inflammatory properties may help to treat them.

Essential oils must be diluted in a carrier oil before being applied to the skin. Essential oils can also be inhaled from a few drops on a tissue or in a diffuser. Essential oils should not be taken internally.

There are two types of hemorrhoids:

Internal hemorrhoids – are located inside the rectum so you don’t see or feel them. You often don’t experience pain because there aren’t many pain-sensing nerves in your inner rectum.

internal and external Hemorrhoids

External hemorrhoids – appear around the anus and are more visible and much more painful because you have more pain-sensing nerves in this area.  Symptoms often include itching, bleeding, pain, and swelling. 

In extreme cases, a surgical procedure may be needed to remove them. 

If your case is mild there are also lifestyle changes you can make to ease this condition: 

  • Be sure to properly hydrate and drink enough water daily. This will help to keep your digestion regular.
  • Increase your daily fiber intake by consuming more organic, whole foods such as leafy greens, vegetables, whole fruit, and nuts and seeds. (This is what yogis eat.) 
  • Invest in a squatty potty to help ease your bowel movements. 
  • Use essential oils to manage and prevent symptoms from occurring and accelerate healing. 

Essential Oils as a natural remedy

If you’re looking for a natural solution and more home remedies, essential oils (EOs) may be useful. Essential oils are concentrated plant compounds derived from various parts of trees, plants, flowers, and fruits.

Aromatherapy is the therapeutic application of these oils. Because of their high content of active compounds that provide medicinal and healing effects, essential oils have grown in popularity in the health and wellness space.

Research shows essential oils can be effective at: 

  • Boosting immunity
  • Decreasing stress and anxiety Improving sleep
  • Relieving pain and discomfort
  • Soothing eczema and other skin conditions
  • Treating colds, coughs, sinus infections, and sore throats
  • Addressing allergy symptoms
  • Soothing headaches and migraines

Just a few drops of can be enough to boost and support your body’s own healing mechanisms. 

Best Essential Oils for the treatment of hemorrhoids

When choosing EOs for hemorrhoids you want to use oils that are known to have the following properties: 

  • Anti-inflammatory (to reduce swelling)
  • Antiseptic (to keep the affected area clean to prevent infection.)
  • Analgesic ( to provide pain relief.) 

Tea tree essential oil 

tea tree essential oil
tea tree essential oils

Tea tree oil kills bacteria while also reducing inflammation and promoting healing.

This oil is far too potent to apply directly to your skin, particularly the sensitive, inflamed skin around a hemorrhoid. However, you can make a tea tree oil ointment by combining it with one or two other essential oils from this list and diluting it thoroughly with jojoba or coconut oil. Apply sparingly to the affected area.

Safety & Caution:

  • Not safe for babies under 6 months old
  • Toxic if ingested (topical use only) 
  • May cause skin irritation (perform a patch test) 
  • Avoid contact with eyes and mucus membranes

Cypress oil 

cypress
Cypress tree

Highly anti-inflammatory and may also help shrink swollen blood vessels

Cypress oil has demonstrated antimicrobial, soothing, and astringent properties that could improve blood flow and pain around an external hemorrhoid. Apply cypress oil mixed with a carrier oil to avoid burning your skin. People with sensitive skin should refrain from using cypress oil on the skin. Consider infusing this oil into the air for its antimicrobial effects.

Safety & Caution: 

  • Not safe for pregnant or breastfeeding mamas. 
  • Not safe for babies under 6 months of age. 
  • Avoid prolonged use.
  • May cause skin irritation.

Peppermint oil

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Peppermint essential oil

Peppermint’s main active ingredient, menthol, helps give a soothing and cooling sensation when applied topically. 

Because peppermint essential oil has been shown to be effective in the treatment of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), some believe it may also aid in the treatment of hemorrhoids. Peppermint oil’s soothing menthol component, combined with its anti-inflammatory properties, may help to relieve pressure around your anus and make bowel movements less painful, is also a potent pain-reliever and local anesthetic. 

Peppermint essential oils should be avoided by people with sensitive skin. Remember to dilute this essential oil thoroughly before using it.

Safety & Caution: 

  • Not safe for babies and children under 6 years old
  • Not safe for pregnant and breastfeeding mamas
  • If you have high blood pressure
  • May cause skin irritation (perform a patch test) 
  • Avoid contact with eyes and mucus membranes

Clove essential oil

clove essential oil
Clove essential oilA transparent bottle of clove essential oil with cloves on white background

Clove essential oil can be purchased in its pure form or combined with cream. Clove oil cream was shown to improve anal pressure in people with chronic anal fissures, which can occur in conjunction with hemorrhoids.

Clove is a powerful pain reliever that can soothe the affected area while helping to lower inflammation and irritation.  

Clove oil cream can be purchased online at doTerra or at a natural health food store. You can make your own by combining 3 to 5 drops of essential oil per ounce of unscented, hypoallergenic oil-based lotion. People with sensitive skin should avoid using clove oil.

Safety & Caution: 

  • Not safe for pregnant or breastfeeding mamas. 
  • Not safe for babies and children under 2 years of age. 
  • Avoid prolonged use. 
  • Don’t apply undiluted on skin. 
  • May cause skin irritation; perform a patch test.

Side effects and risks

It is critical to keep the surrounding area clean and dry after using essential oils to treat hemorrhoids. Never try to “burn off” or disintegrate the skin surrounding a hemorrhoid, as this will aggravate your pain and increase your risk of infection.

Essential oils are only used as a topical treatment for external hemorrhoids. Never try to treat an internal hemorrhoid by putting an essential oil inside you unless you’re using a doctor-approved suppository.

Some essential oils can also carry with them a risk of toxicity, and while most are fairly mild and low-risk treatments, there’s no substitute for the care of a doctor. If you have any of the following, don’t try to treat it on your own:

  • pain and swelling that lasts more than one week
  • lumps inside your anus that appear to be growing
  • chronic and recurring constipation
  • severe bleeding from your anus

Call your doctor for an evaluation and to make a treatment plan.

Safety concern

When used correctly and safely, essential oils usually have few to no side effects.

When used as natural treatments for hemorrhoids or when used topically for any condition EOs must always be diluted in a carrier oil in order to prevent skin irritations and reactions. 

To avoid diluted batches and the addition of potentially harmful chemicals, you should always choose high-quality, certified organic, and therapeutic-grade products. Ingest essential oils only under the supervision of an experienced aromatherapist or after consulting with your doctor.

Do not ingest essential oils without the supervision of an experienced aromatherapist or without prior consultation with your doctor.  If you’re pregnant or a nursing mama then make sure you check the safety and caution features above and steer clear of any contraindications as some essential oils, although effective, are not safe during pregnancy or while breastfeeding.